There was plenty of great chatter yesterday between Jose Reyes and the beat reporters who spoke to him at the Mets spring training complex at St. Lucie. One thing that you immediately notice is how genuinely enthusiastic Reyes is regarding his leg injury which he says is completely behind him now.
“I don’t have to be careful about nothing because I’m ready to go,” he said. “If I try to take care of something, that wouldn’t be the right way for me. I just have to do what I do before when I’m healthy. I feel good, so I’m able to do everything on the field.”
However, the best thing Reyes said was how he believes he will be better than before, and that could only mean great things for a franchise that desperately needs to get off to a fast start once the season begins.
“I can come back better, a lot better, because the last 14 weeks, I’ve been working so hard just to get ready for spring training. Now, I’m ready. Maybe I’m going to be a little better.”
I can’t wait to see our spark-plug back at the top of the order and wreaking havoc on the basepaths again. His infectious smile and energy is needed now more than ever. It looks like baseball’s best leadoff hitter is ready to put a much needed charge back into this Mets lineup.
In the last 48 hours, I’ve heard many callers on WFAN and even some of my fellow Mets bloggers, suggest switching Jose Reyes from the leadoff spot to the number three spot in the lineup. I’d be strongly opposed to such a move and was puzzled by it when Jerry Manuel first suggested it last season.
Sometimes, a ballplayer takes on the expectations of his spot in the lineup. We’ve seen before what can happen when Reyes tries to golf one out of the park only to reach the front of the warning track or an infield popup.
Reyes’ is at his worst when he sees himself as a slugger and it usually leads to his notable 2 for 25 slumps at the plate, before finally getting some sense knocked into him by HoJo and resuming his role as the team’s catalyst.
Why mess with his head now anyway, when what the Mets need most is his amazing talents at the top of the order?
Apparently, some of the rationale is that Pagan would assume the leadoff role, but what you are really doing is potentially giving more at-bats to your fourth outfielder over the course of a season, than your core players, Reyes and David Wright. Where’s the logic in that?
Lets end all this Reyes batting third chatter before Manuel catches wind of it and does something insane like actually implementing it.